Monday, August 21, 2006

Don't ask the book's author 'Why did they . . . ?' She is wondering too.

Ursula K. Le Guin: Gedo Senki, a First Response: "Don't ask the book's author 'Why did they . . . ?' She is wondering too."

The "Brief history" part is very interesting:
"Twenty or so years ago, Mr Hayao Miyazaki wrote me expressing interest in making an animated film based on the (then only three) books of Earthsea. I did not know his work. I knew only Disney-type animation, and disliked it. I said no.
Six or seven years ago, my friend [...] told me about My Neighbor Totoro and we watched it together. I became a Miyazaki fan at once and forever. I consider him a genius of the same caliber as Kurosawa or Fellini."
Where you get disappointed by Ghibli's behaviour:
"It was explained to us that Mr Hayao wished to retire from film making, and that the family and the studio wanted Mr Hayao's son Goro, who had never made a film at all, to make this one. We were very disappointed, and also anxious, but we were given the impression, indeed assured, that the project would be always subject to Mr Hayao's approval. With this understanding, we made the agreement."
"I am sorry that anger and disappointment attended the making of this film on both sides of the Pacific Ocean.
I am told that Mr Hayao has not retired after all, but is now making another movie. This has increased my disappointment. I hope to put it behind me."
Where it gets "juicy":

"I did not realise that I was speaking to anyone but him and the few people around us. I would have preferred that a private reply to a private question not be made public. I mention it here only because Mr Goro has mentioned it in his blog.

So, in the spirit of everything being public all the time for fifteen minutes, I will give a fuller report of my first response to the film:" [...]

It seems there is many comments in Japan about the "controversy". One fan writes:
The ones affected the most are in a sense the most open and innocent. They only know that they have been moved, are happy and relieved when the boy lays aside his guilt and anxiety at the end, and so hurt by the more objective viewpoints that they tend to go on the offensive. Some are still willing to think, some are swayed by your comments (which they read with a dictionary) — and sadly some can't abide any criticism of the movie, protecting the director and blaming its incoherence on the books. Even so, they all are victims of the chain reaction which started when too much responsibility was shouldered by someone not equipped for it.

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